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I have questions! Just bought a 300# Bradley

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Hi everyone, I just got a #300 Bradley upright Helve. It's a beast, it's also my first power hammer. (Yeah I know, go big or go home right?)

I've been trying to find Pat Nowak, he's the only person that I know of who has this hammer and I'd like to pick his and collectively everyone's brains.

I'm currently building the rebar box for the foundation. I'll add pictures. Any suggestions on well anything?

The structure is still in its infancy, I plan on adding more rebar a long the vertical sections for support against the pour.

I've got what seems like part of the owners manual and I've got the allthread centered to within 1/8" play.

I plan on putting the cart before the horse and setting the hammer on the foundation then building the shop(40X60) around it.

Should I plan on using plywood along the walls of the hole or can I just pour directly into the pit? Allowing for a stone base mat of course.

Thanks so much in advance for your replies. 


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Gotta love a Bradley, We need more pics!

Patrick is @patrick on here. If you need manuals let me or Patrick know and either of us can send them to you.

I can't tell the dimensions of your box, but it looks sufficient.  Bradley wants a pit 5-1/2 foot deep for that hammer if you go by the book. There are a bunch of varying ways to make the pit, with threads here on IFI about it.  Some people go all out, others pour concrete in a open hole, your mileage may vary.  If your putting stone in the bottom and pouring concrete over it, I would put 1" rigid foam around the sides and bottom, with the corners and floor taped, and probably line the whole thing with plastic before pouring the concrete in.

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Here are some more pics, I'd post more but I'm having an incredibly hard time getting them uploaded, they keep failing.

Right now the base is 4x8' I have about 2' of mesh I plan on putting out front of the anvil side of the hammer to help absorb the energy.

Thanks for suggesting the insulation, I wasn't looking forward to a couple hundred bucks worth of plywood.

I'd appreciate it if you could send me the whole manual! I've got up to the foundation schematics and a page after that maybe.





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Welcome aboard Ken, glad to have you. If you'll put your general location in the header you might be surprised how many of the Iforge gang live within visiting distance.

What a beast and look at all those dies! I think I'd build it a foundation of it's very own myself. I got to use a Bradly helve once and it was a sweet machine, smaller but what a sweet soft treadle, fine control and powerful blow. 

Keep us in the loop while you bring her back to life please.

Frosty The Lucky.

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  • 2 weeks later...
  • 1 month later...

Sorry Salem, no updates as of yet. I've built the rebar cage but that's it.

I'm waiting to get a bit more funds so I can get my new pole barn put up at the same time I put this thing in the ground.

If I remember I'll take some pictures of the rebar cage tonight.

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Right on.  I was just hoping your project was not languishing... too cool of a hammer!  I feel you on waiting for funds, I just keep making knives until I can afford the next thing my hammer needs.  I'm set to rent a wet saw and cut the foundation hole in my floor though, this Friday.
Best of luck to you!

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